Josh Beckett earned his first win of the season Tuesday night, which also gave the Los Angeles Dodgers a modest two-game winning streak. The Dodgers are now going for the three-game sweep of the Miami Marlins with a weekend series on the road against the Arizona Diamondbacks beginning Friday.
Taking the ball for the Dodgers is Paul Maholm, who is 1-3 with a 4.71 ERA in six starts. Maholm has largely been inconsistent, throwing a seven-inning gem against the Colorado Rockies on April 26, only to follow it up two starts later with a 5.2 inning effort where he issued a season-high four walks and suffered his third loss.
Maholm last faced the Marlins a mere 11 days during the Dodgers’ nine-game road trip. The left-hander went six innings, allowing three runs on nine hits and taking a no-decision in the Dodger win. Maholm is an even 6-6 in 14 career starts against the Marlins.
If Maholm hopes to walk away with a win Wednesday night, he’ll need to avoid being beat by Marlins third baseman Casey McGehee and right fielder Giancarlo Stanton, both of whom are hitting above .300 against the lefty. A small caveat to Stanton’s success is he’s only had nine career at-bats against Maholm, whereas McGehee has 25. Maholm may catch a break however, as McGehee isn’t in the lineup, but it doesn’t rule out a potential pinch-hit appearance.
Heading into the series, the Marlins figured to send Jose Fernandez to the mound in the three-game finale. However, news emerged Monday Fernandez was to be placed on the disabled list and was awaiting the results from an MRI. The results revealed a torn ulnar collateral ligament in Fernandez’s right elbow and season-ending Tommy John surgery has been recommended.
With Fernandez unavailable, the Marlins turn to Double-A call up, Anthony DeSclafani, who makes his Major League debut. The 24-year-old is 3-4 with a 4.19 ERA over eight starts with the Marlins’ Minor League affiliate in Jacksonville, Fla. Aside from Fernandez’s injury, the circumstances surrounding DeSclafani’s big league debut aren’t the best for the right-hander.
Yasiel Puig is riding a 13-game hitting streak and the Dodgers have scored at least six runs in the first two games of the series. Andre Ethier replaces Matt Kemp in center field, as he’s out of the lineup for rest. After playing in two rehab games, catcher A.J. Ellis was reinstated from the DL Wednesday, which corresponded with Miguel Olivo being optioned to Triple-A in order to clear room on the roster.
Clayton Kershaw’s Impressive Return, A.J. Ellis Improving